tech2 News StaffJun 12, 2019 12:38:38 IST
It's no secret that Apple will quite likely introduce 5G-capable iPhones in 2020. The Cupertino giant had earlier planned on using Intel 5G modems but reports had indicated that Intel could not meet design deadlines.
Now a new report has stated that Apple might be looking to buy Intel’s German modem unit.
As per The Information, Apple has been in discussion with Intel about a buying a portion of its business since last year. The said deal could most likely bring “hundreds” of modem engineers to Apple. The report does not quote any figure for this acquisition.
In 2011, Intel had acquired chipmaker Infineon's wireless unit for $1.4 bn. Infineon has been associated with making wireless chips for Apple iPhones from 2007 to 2010. The staff from Infineon was absorbed in Intel's German arm. It is this very division that Apple is now in talks to buy out, in what is being termed as an acqui-hire. Apple has been in talks about this deal since last year, and according to the report, the deal could also fall apart. If the deal goes through, Apple will also get access to the patents and products of this Intel unit.
High profile names Stefan Wolff, former manager of Intel’s German modem outfit was hired by Apple a couple of months back.
The report also notes that Apple will quite likely use Qualcomm's 5G modems in its iPhones next year after the two companies came to a multi-billion dollar settlement last month.
In future, Apple is said to be working to completely cut off its dependence on third-party hardware maker. Apple wants to manufacture its own modems, however, reports mention that this will not happen before 2025.
In more recent Apple-related news, the company is looking to buy autonomous vehicle startup Drive.ai thereby adding more talent to its self-driving tech ambitions.
According to a report in The Information (paywall), the acquisition is more of an acqui-hire, which means that Apple is more interested in the talent that will come along with the purchase. In terms of technical prowess, Drive.ai had a limited number of pilot tests and Apple's self-driving technology is quite ahead in the game.
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